Thursday, December 04, 2008

No MP3 Headphone Near Heart Disease Patients Equipped with Defibrillator!

Listening to MP3 songs and music using MP3 digital music players with headphone has become a lifestyle of today’s youth. Lately, it seems to gain popularity among older generations as well. Nowadays, it is rather difficult to find a mobile phone that is without MP3 player.

From now on, people who like to listen to music using MP3 player with headphone should be more careful. This is because a new study revealed that the headphone used in MP3 player, if placed within an inch of lifesaving cardiac devices such as pacemakers or implantable defibrillators, the operation of those devices may be interfered.

Presented the findings at an American Heart Association conference during November 2008, the researchers from the Medical Device Safety Institute at Beth Israel Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts found that neodymium appears to cause the devices to function improperly. This could thus pose a potential great risk to heart disease patients who rely on the devices. Neodymium is a magnetic substance that can be found in the MP3 player headphones.

By exposing to headphones, a defibrillator could temporarily be deactivated. As such, headphones accompanying the popular MP3 digital music players must be at a distance of at least 1.2 inches (or 3 centimeters) away from the implanted devices, according to the study.

Meanwhile, the scientists caution heart disease patients, who use heart devices, not to put the MP3 player headphones in their pocket or to hang them over their chest. They also advise friends or family members of heart disease patients with implantable defibrillators to avoid wearing headphones and not to rest their head right on top of the devices used in their family members or friends.

Nevertheless, the researchers determined that outside studies did not find any adverse reactions to pacemakers and defibrillators from other portable electronic devices like iPod, Bluetooth headsets, iPhone, electric blankets or hand-held airport metal detectors.

Incidentally, both iPod and iPhone are MP3 players and headphones used in other digital music players can be used in iPod and iPhone too. I wonder why there is such a different reaction. Perhaps further studies should be carried out to ascertain such disparities.

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